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Slim in the City
Make Your Urban Lifestyle a Healthy One
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Great blog, thanks for sharing.
I have often wanted to drown my troubles, but I can't get my wife to go swimming. ~Rodney Dangerfield
Spent last week at my daughter's apt in NYC, watching her cats. I found that essentially every statement Stephanie made regarding large cities certainly is true. I went to a newly opened local grocery the first Saturday it was open. By far, the greatest number of customers were congregated in the produce and dairy aisle. There were 4-5 staff constantly resupplying shelves in both areas, sometimes a customer taking a package right out of the stock person's hand. As for exercise, the parks are packed, as are many of the less trafficed streets.
I moved from the heart of Seattle to a suburb of Sacramento. In Seattle I biked and walked everywhere. When I saw the walkability score of 39, I thought ridiculous, you can walk anywhere. Oh I was so very wrong. I finally gave up doing much. When you land in an area of strip malls and 6 lane split boulevards, you have no hope of not using a car. We moved, thankfully, into Sacramento. Although it is nothing like Seattle I feel as though I can function much like I did in Seattle. I bike into downtown and I walk a ton. I am finding my groove again, but certainly in my experience, the burbs and not at all health friendly and the city was much better. I also love not being surrounded by chain restaurants and box stores. I love a good coffee shop and they did not have any in the burbs, Starbucks does not count, btw.
I live on a farm...in the country of course. Downside is we lives several miles to the nearest city. Takes almost 30 minutes to get to work. I use videos, youtube, or the walk track my husband made for me out back.
I walk all the time. When I go on vacation I do alot of walking instead of driving. I love to walk. That's just me.
Working in Portland Oregon, I'm able to find "fast" food at the outdoor food carts that is quite often healthier than what I'd fix at home. We have 200 plus miles of trails, I wonder if I'll ever make it to them all!
I live in a NYC suburb and work in Manhattan and I feel like Manhattanites are slimmer than my suburban neighbors. I think the reason why NYC was ranked as a "fat" city is because it probably counted all 5 boroughs of NYC. The truth of the matter is that a lot of people who live in the outer boroughs (meaning not Manhattan) fall into the lower socioeconomic classes. Those who are poor tend to be more overweight. The people who live in Manhattan tend to fall into higher socioeconomic classes (hello? they can afford to live in Manhattan) and these are the people I see who tend to be slimmer. So the question isn't necessarily of city vs suburban living (although I think that in general suburban living does mean people sit on their behinds more and are therefore less active) but rather poor vs wealthy.
I think it's MUCH easier to get in a reasonable amount of walking if one lives in a city - at least, if you're in an area that allows you to walk to most/many of your destinations. It can be harder in smaller/mid-size cities where zoning restrictions may isolate housing from commercial spaces. I strongly believe that we need to re-think our views on zoning as well as prioritizing sidewalks in future roadway improvements.
I don't see it - I was just saying last weekend that everywhere I went in NYC there were healthy, slim people! I walked 15 miles in 2 days (tracked, not an estimate) and we didn't even do that much! Perhaps the unhealthy factors come more from things like pollution and stress?
I'm moving to the city (small city) in the next few months, from a relatively rural area of retired people. I can't wait for the opportunities that await.
Thanks for a great article.
I lived in wonderful CHICAGO where I did a lot of walking, but then when I lived in Los Angeles, I had to DRIVE everywhere.
I'm definitely healthier now that I've moved to a big city. I walk everywhere, or take public transportation, and only drive the car when absolutely necessary. Where I used to live, I lived only a mile from work, but couldn't walk because there weren't sidewalks and I would have been risking my life!
And, all this walking has an added bonus - my carbon footprint is smaller!
Plus, I don't really have the money to eat out a lot, so most of my meals are cooked from fresh ingredients.
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